Mediating Land Use Disputes: Pros and Cons

Mieke van der Wansem , Armando Ciccarelli
Saturday, January 1, 2000

This report is one in a series of policy focus reports published by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy to address timely public policy issues relating to land use, property taxation and the value of land. Each report is designed to bridge the gap between theory and practice by combining research, case studies and personal experiences from scholars in a variety of academic disciplines and from professional practitioners, local officials and citizens in different types of communities. 

Based on the results of a national study involving 100 communities around the united states that utilized assisted negotiation in an attempt to resolve local land use disputes, this report examines the pros and cons of pursuing such processes in what is becoming an increasingly complex political environment. We review the historical context in which land use decisions have traditionally been made as well as the relevant literature produced by supporters and opponents of consensus building techniques. We hope that this report proves instructive to those who have to make decisions about whether and how to use assisted negotiation to resolve land use disputes.